|1997||Removed from Danger list|
|1992||In Danger||At request of Croatia|
|1979||Inscribed||Reasons for inscription|Hubert Scharnagl (Austria):
The Plitvice Lakes National Park in the Dinaric Mountains is the largest and best known national park in Croatia. In total, the park comprises about 300 square kilometres, mostly primeval beech and fir forest, and is the refuge of bears, wolves and lynx. However, we've not seen any of these shy animals, except for the bear in the park logo. Like most tourists, we visited the area around the lakes, which is only a small part of the entire park. This landscape is called the "land of the falling lakes". At a length of 8 km, two larger and fourteen smaller lakes are lined up like pearls on a string. The lakes are connected by cascades and waterfalls and separated by natural barriers of travertine. It is a breathtakingly beautiful landscape: the water is crystal clear and shimmers blue and turquoise, beeches grow close to the shore, and everywhere is lush greenery.
We started our tour at the southern park entrance, which lies midway between the upper and lower lakes. First, we hiked north along the eastern shore of the largest lake (Kozjak jezero). The area of the four lower lakes are in a canyon-like landscape, our guide book described it as the most beautiful part of the park. The trail leads uphill along the ridge of the canyon to the big waterfall (Veliki slap) with a height of 78 metres. We had wonderful views of the lower lakes (photo) and the northern part of the park. Then we walked down to the bottom of the canyon. The trail back leads close along the lakeside, we walked on wooden footbridges and well paved paths.
The second part of our tour led south along numerous small lakes and pools to the upper large lake. We came past countless watercourses, cascades and waterfalls, it's an awesome scenery. There are trails on both shores and footbridges inbetween. Often, we walked back and took an alternative route in order to capture all beautiful views and scenic details. Most notable is the Galovac waterfall with 25 metres in height. I liked this middle section even better than the first part of our tour. The last of the upper lakes (Proscansko jezero) is less attractive, also beautiful, but it looked like many other mountain lakes I've visited before. So we did not continue our hike along the lakeside, in favour of a delicious picnic.
In total, we spent the whole day in the park. It was a warm, sunny weekday in June 2006, perfect for our tour, the park was not too busy. Most guide books recommend not to visit on weekends in summer, when the area around the lakes is very crowded.
The park can easily be explored by foot, there is a network of hiking trails and wooden footbridges around the lakes. The height difference between the lowest and highest lake is 130 meters. Shuttle buses run between the upper lake and the entrances and there are also electric boats that take visitors from one end of the largest lake to the other.
We stayed at the Hotel Jezero, one of the three hotels near the southern park entrance. The décor and atmosphere had the charm of the 50's, quite pleasant. But the large dining room was not to our taste. We preferred one of the taverns along the National Road, where we enjoyed a barbecue with suckling pig. In Croatia, they seem to have a passion for barbecue, not the best place for vegetarians.
The Plitvice Lakes are at the National Road D1 and can easily be reached by car. There are also buses from Zadar (about 150 km). The lakes are definitely worth a visit, even for people who are generally not fans of natural WHS.
Date posted: November 2012 Klaus Freisinger (Austria):
These lakes in central Croatia are justly famous for their natural beauty and wildlife. A classic karst landscape, the lakes are separated by dams and waterfalls. You can walk among the lakes on relatively narrow and slippery wooden trails. The area is really beautiful, unfortunately, when I visited there, it was cold and pouring (and it was mid-June). So maybe I'll get the chance to visit the lakes again in better weather sometime in the future.
Date posted: June 2009 ():
i think it will be very nice atraction :) i am very happy being there,because animals will be interesting,much insects,bet no problem,they are not bad. i see much nice and ineresting views who was absolutely wonderful and pleases my eye. I am very happy being there!
My first trip to Croatia, and my friend Domenic took me to Plitvicka. We spend the night in his van in Slunj, where I got a bit of a preview of the area.
My knowledge about the park was zero when I arrived and I was in for a big surprise.
People say "it is the most beuatiful area in the whole of Kroatia", and afterwards I admit had to agree, eventhough I did not see the rest of the country.
Now I look out to seeing the movie of Winnetoe and the treasure of the Silver lake, just to get a bit back of that one wonderful day I spent there; saturday 10 June 2006, a great day, thanks a lot; Dado, Maja and Bagi!
Date posted: August 2006 Jon Grunstad (USA):
About late May of 2003
I arrived by bicyle, bus and train to the park with the help of a pretty moslem woman and her french speaking Swiss girlfriend. We met while sitting at an isolated woodside intersection, while waiting for the local bus. The park is deeply shaded and wild in appearance. Most board walk trails are not signed in english. It takes a good 5 to 8 hours to view/travel the main riparian paths. there is a short boat trip involved. Walking is easy and cool. The region is a very safe one for travelers. Hotels are full service and expenses are low to moderate.
Have you been to Plitvice Lakes National Park? Share your experiences!